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Old 2020-02-19, 9:06pm
beadysam's Avatar
beadysam beadysam is offline
Frit frit and more frit!
Join Date: Nov 09, 2005
Location: Wales, UK
Posts: 466
Smile Seiber/sieber 'agate'. Anyone know anything about it?

Hi all,
I have lived at my address in Wales for about 20 years. Its a small village part way up a 'mountain' (big hill really), with no local industry that I am aware of except historical coal mining.

Anyway, about 7 years ago I got a dog, and she loves water - in the river each day. On warmer days I paddle with her and pick up any glass or other rubbish I find while she barks at rocks!!! Over the years I have found loads of pieces of blue rock in the water. The size is from a few mm up to pieces that are probably a couple of KGS. No-one local has a clue what it is and I have never been able to ID it online. I have never seen it 'out in the wild', only in the river. Its strange stuff, goes from a pale blue, through to midnight blue and even purples, sometimes there are yellowish streaks too. Sometimes it is embeded or joined with other rock or stone such as sandstone or similar. The texture of this rocks are strange too. It feels smooth and almost waxy like crayons in some places and in others it feels like glass, but with no sharp edges - and obviously, it is rough where it joins other stones.

Recently, and totally by accident I spotted some of this stuff online - I am 99% sure I am right. From what I can gather, its called Seiber or Sieber agate - although its not a rock. From what I can gather, it is slag left over from the copper industry, ovet 1400 years old, and named after the river in Germany where it was discovered. So what on earth is it doing in a stream in Wales???

I just wondered if anyone here had any experience of the stuff, and has anyone tried melting it...? My torch isn't set up at the moment, but next time I find some I will have a go at meting it. Meanwhile, anyone know anything? Thanks in advance.

Here's a couple of links to show it both in raw and polished states;

Last edited by beadysam; 2020-02-19 at 9:09pm.
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